When chosen strategically, the right plants will add not only beauty to your garden, but also some much-appreciated privacy. If completing the landscaping around your home to add curb appeal at the front and increase privacy at the back has been on your home to-do list for a while, consider taking a tour of our virtual Get It Done 2022 make home. This 3D house is brimming with inspiration to get those “someday” chores done – and will convince you to make this year the year you finally invest in the landscaping you love.
To get backyard privacy off your to-do list, we reached out to plant professionals at Monrovia and Costa Farms to find out which plant varieties would work best for the purpose. From false cypress trees that create a natural privacy screen around your garden, to a vine that twines up trellises, there’s an option for every style. Check if the plant will survive in your planting zone, then be patient while it grows. The wait will be worth it when these plants offer privacy from your neighbors and turn your outdoor space into your personal oasis.
Burgundy Queen Bougainvillea
“Burgundy Queen features stunning flowers and gorgeous foliage,” says Georgia Clay, the new plant manager at Monrovia. “The new leaves are a striking, deep burgundy red, while the flower-like bracts are an even more dramatic burgundy hue.” This fast-growing climber is also an ideal plant for screening out from neighbors. Clay explains, “Burgundy Queen is a vigorous climber that can grow up to 30 feet in length. It’s the perfect choice for weaving through trellises and fences for privacy, or as an accent plant in large patio pots.”
Zones: 10 to 11
Darkstar Purpleleaf Sand Cherry
With dense branching that starts at ground level and grows up to 5 feet tall, this bedding plant will add both privacy and color to your garden. It has crimson to maroon foliage and in spring you’ll enjoy light pink to white flowers.
Zones: 3 to 9
Jade Waves Fernspray False Cypress
“Jade Waves’ beautifully arching branches and airy green foliage give the garden a serene vibe,” says Clay. Plant a row of false cypresses to create a privacy screen of evergreen, fern-like foliage. Over time, they grow to be about four feet wide and up to eight feet tall.
zones: 4 to 8
Sparkler Arrowwood Viburnum
This viburnum variety combines glossy green leaves with delicate white flowers. It also produces berries that attract birds to your garden. Arranged together, several viburnums form a hedge along the perimeter of your garden.
Zones: 4 to 9
Emerald Colonnade Holly
To create a lush privacy screen, let this variety of holly grow into its natural pyramid shape. In gardens where privacy is less important, this dense periwinkle also makes a great topiary. If this plant grows out of control it can grow up to 12 feet tall, creating a tall border around your yard.
Zones: 7 to 9
“This fast-growing vine produces red, pink, or white flowers that attract butterflies and hummingbirds, and are quick to climb up a trellis, arbor, or other structure,” says Costa Farms’ Justin Hancock. Plant them in spring, after the threat of frost has passed, and choose a spot in full sun. Mandevilla comes in two forms, climbing and hills. So if you want privacy from your neighbors make sure you find the climbing variant. “Bonus: It’s usually ignored by deer and rabbits too!” adds Hancock.
Zones: 9 to 11
“Like Mandevilla, there are several species of jasmine that grow as vines, allowing you to cover a wall or peek into their lush dark green foliage and fragrant white flowers,” says Hancock. Depending on the jasmine variety, they are hardy in different zones, so be sure to check the care label before deciding on one.
Zones: 7 to 9 (depending on variety)
Blue Arrow Juniper
“Here’s a hardy (it can survive -30 degrees Fahrenheit!), evergreen shrub that only grows about a meter wide and about 12 feet tall, making it perfect as a living privacy screen without taking up a lot of garden space,” explains Hancock. With a base of cool blue leaves, this juniper pairs well with a variety of plants. Once established, it is fairly drought tolerant.
Zones: 4 to 9
Horstmann’s silver curl Korean fir
“I have a hard time picking a favorite plant, but I absolutely adore this evergreen tree,” says Hancock. “It grows fairly slowly but has dense branching, which makes it excellent for providing privacy.” If you are patient, it will grow into a beautiful 10ft high and 6ft wide screen within 10 years. “It thrives best in climates with cool summers, all day sun to part shade, and moist but well-drained soil.”
Zones: 5 to 7